Tired of cherries yet? Well, we thought we would be, but they are so good (and plentiful) this year that we can’t seem to get enough. But as our season is ending, we are doing as much as we can with our cherries. We made cocktails, cherry-based salads and clafoutis for dessert, so now Carolyn made some “muffins” for breakfast. Of course, as we noted from some earlier recipes, Carolyn’s muffins often seem closer to cupcakes. But the boys and I aren’t complaining.
And these muffins are a very good use of cherries. Cherries go well with chocolate and are firm enough to hold their shape in a muffin (or cake). And part of the cool thing about this recipe is its flexibility. We used sweet Bing cherries, so Carolyn used bittersweet chocolate chips, but if you have less sweet or (if you get lucky) sour cherries then you can add regular chocolate or even white chocolate chips to balance the fruit. And these muffins are a delicious balance of sweet, nutty and fruity flavors- and the chocolate adds great depth. You can eat a bunch of these and never tire of the taste.
The other point of flex in the recipe is the flour. Carolyn adds white whole wheat flour to the batter. We think it gives a nuttier flavor that plays very well with most fruit-driven recipes. In case you are curious, white whole wheat flour is simply milled from hard white spring wheat, rather than traditional red wheat. It is whole wheat flour, but is lighter in color and flavor and acts more like AP flour. But if you prefer all-purpose flour, the recipe will still work with 100% AP flour.
Otherwise the recipe is classic muffin-making. Preheat oven and grease your muffin tin or use muffin cups (grease the top of the pan, these are big muffins). Cream butter and sugar, add some eggs, add flour, then milk. Add your cherries and chocolate and put the batter in the muffin tin. Maybe sprinkle some sugar on top. Bake for about 30 minutes and then endure a final, excruciating wait for the muffins to cool. Then serve the muffins (and prepare to be a hero).
Cherry And Chocolate Chip Muffins:
Notes Before You Start:
- As noted earlier you can balance the cherry and chocolate flavors. Sweet cherry = bittersweet chocolate. Mild or sour cherry = regular or white chocolate chips.
- The recipe allows for a greased muffin pan or paper muffin cups. We suggest paper muffin cups with some non-stick spray in the cups as well. And always grease the top of the muffin tin to avoid the muffin tops from sticking.
What You Get: Tasty fruit and chocolate
What You Need: A muffin tin. A stand mixer is a big help in all baking. No other special equipment required.
How Long: 45-60 minutes with about 10 minutes of active time. If you wake up early, this is an anytime dish. Certainly a good weekend dish.
(Makes 12 muffins)
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick, 4 ounces) butter
- 1 cup (7 ounces) sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 cup (4 1/4 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 cup (4 1/4 ounces) whole wheat white flour
- 1/2 cup (4 ounces) milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups of pitted cherries cut into quarters
- 1 cup of bittersweet chocolate chips
- 2 teaspoons Turbinado sugar
- Preheat the oven to 375 F. Using a stand mixer and in a medium-sized mixing bowl, cream the butter, sugar, and salt together until light. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the baking powder, then add the flours alternatively with the milk, beating well after each addition. Add the cherries and the chocolate chips to the batter and run the mixer for a little bit, just to combine.
- Grease the top of the muffin tin, with either butter or vegetable spray, line the muffin cups with paper liners, spray the muffin cups with vegetable spray. Mound the batter into the muffin cups, filling each completely to the top (actually, over the top; the batter is thick enough that it’ll hold its shape). Sprinkle with sugar.
- Bake the muffins for 30 minutes (rotating the pan after 15 minutes) or until a cake tester inserted in the center of one comes out clean. Remove the muffins from the oven, and after 5 minutes remove them from the pan to cool completely on a rack, or gently flip them sideways in the pan. (Muffins left in the pan will steam, creating a tough crust). Serve while warm.